Woman who paid for hotel rooms for Chicago homeless during cold snap given $50,000 gift

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LOS ANGELES — The woman who got hotel rooms for more than 100 homeless people during a brutal cold snap in Chicago last week received a huge surprise gift this week.

Real estate developer Candice Payne had booked 20 hotel rooms at the Amber Inn motel. With the help of others, thanks to social media, she ultimately booked 60 rooms for more than 100 people, including children and families.

After hearing her story, talk show host and comedian Ellen DeGeneres invited Payne on the show to talk about her act of kindness.

But then DeGeneres surprised her with a $25,000 check.

Payne tearfully thanked her for the gift and said that helping the homeless is her newfound passion and that she plans to use the money to launch her not-for-profit that will help homeless people.

But as the Sun Times reports, as soon as she finished explaining what she would do with the money, DeGeneres said she called Walmart and asked to give Payne another $25,000, bringing the total of the gift to $50,000.

Payne told the Sun Times that being on the show was “absolutely amazing.”

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